By James Goyder
Stamp Kiatniwat and Macrea Gandionco put on a ‘Fight of the Year’ contender at Bangkok Thonburi University on Thursday afternoon.
The two flyweights went to war with Stamp surviving a third round knockdown only to score a sensational stoppage in the fourth.
In the first round Stamp boxed very defensively, allowing Gandionco to back him up constantly while trying his luck with the occasional big right. At this stage there was no indication of the fireworks which would follow.
Stamp stood his ground in the middle of the ring in the second and started to find a home for his right hand but Gandionco continued to walk him down. The Filipino landed straight lefts from the southpaw stance and attacked with a series of hard right hooks to the body.
The action slowed at the start of the third with Stamp backtracking again but it proved to be the calm before the storm. Perhaps sensing weakness Gandionco launched an onslaught of right hooks to the body and he soon had Stamp in full on defensive mode.
A left hand upstairs put the Thai down, although he seemed to be suffering more from the effects of the earlier body shots than the punch itself. At the end of the round Stamps glove appeared to touch the canvass for a second time and the bell probably saved him from a second knockdown.
Stamp looked a little unsteady at the start of the fourth but he came out swinging. Looking to finish the fight Gandionco continued to target the body with right hooks and seemed on the verge of securing a stoppage win.
By this stage Stamp was looking increasingly desperate. It looked a matter of when, not if, the Filipino’s body shots finished him but to his credit the Thai was putting everything behind the punches he did throw in the hope that one of them would land.
Incredibly that’s exactly what happened. With the Thai backed up against the ropes and Gandionco teeing off Stamp somehow produced a right hook to the body which sent the Filipino crumpling to the canvas.
Gandionco never looked like recovering securing Stamp the most dramatic of turnarounds having looked unlikely to see out the fourth round, let alone come back to win by KO.
The win takes the teenager’s record to 19-1, earning him the WBA Asia 112 lbs title. It was a brave effort from Gandionco who set out his stall to win by stoppage and very nearly succeeded. He drops to 12-6-3 but played his part in a late contender for ‘Fight of the Year’.